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Cineclub · · Tucson

Il Boom

Il Boom. Dir. Vittorio De Sica. 1963


Giovanni is a contractor looking for a way out of the debt he's amassed maintaining appearances. At first, things are frenetic: Giovanni buying his wife a car and furs, Giovanni writing lots of checks, Giovanni at the racquet club. Ciao, Giovanni. Ciao! Then things get frantic: Giovanni at the loan company asking for an extension, Giovanni asking a friend for a very large loan, Giovanni trying to scheme his brother-in-law. No, Giovanni. No!

Everyone is zipping around Rome in tiny cars, drinking and dancing the Twist in smart suits and cocktail dresses until dawn, talking Italian. Everything is happening so fast and I start to wonder if the words for frantic and frenetic are as easily confused in Italian as they are in English. Any time you can make out a few words here and there of a language you can't speak, things are bound to feel like they're going too fast, I suppose.

Things slow down eventually and everyone goes to bed. The next day, the wife of a wealthy manufacturer offers Giovanni a way out. It will costare un occhio della testa. I know that idiomatic expression because Spanish has a similar one: costar un ojo de la cara, which means (translated literally) to cost an eye from your face. Or, as an English speaker would say, "It'll cost you an arm and a leg."

This adds an existential dimension to the film's premise. If Giovanni were living beyond his means in Manahattan, he would have to sell two limbs.   

If you don't think about the dark socio-economic implications — and there isn't a lot of time to, so you probably won't — it's a light and fun film. There's even an intermission. You can use it to get snacks or look up words you're wondering about.

Cineclub · · Tucson

Sleeping Beauty

Sleeping Beauty. Dir. Julia Leigh. 2011


A nihilistic college student moonlights with a Helmut Newton styled catering company. She is soon promoted to the role of Sleeping Beauty, a job that entails sleeping for powerful men who can't risk engaging with a woke person.

Cineclub · · Tucson

78/52: Hitchcock’s Shower Scene

78/52: Hitchcock's Shower Scene. Dir. Alexandre O. Philippe. 2017


I did not know that before Psycho was released in 1960, movie audiences were in the habit of coming and going throughout a film. Since Hitchcock kills off one of his films' leads early on in the picture (and perhaps to market intrigue), he required that no one would be seated once the movie had begun to be certain viewers wouldn't miss the film's most memorable scene.

As someone who has always been annoyed by vagabond theater audiences, I was fascinated to learn that. Even though it's probably just about the most mundane thing you can take away from 78/52, which is filled with lots more interesting facts and analysis

It's a documentary about a movie scene everyone knows — even people who have never seen it.

Cineclub · · Tucson

Ivan’s Childhood

Ivan's Childhood. Dir. Andrei Tarkovsk. 1962y


I wanted to see this film based on the cinematography in the trailer. I wasn't disappointed. The way the story blurs the line between dreams and waking life was a bonus.

Cineclub · · Tucson

The Shape of Water

The Shape of Water. Dir. Guillermo del Toro. 2017


I can’t remember the last time I forgot everything else going on in the world at a movie. I loved this.

Cineclub ·

The B-Side

The B-Side: Elsa Dorfman's Portrait Photography. Dir. Errol Morris. 2016


If you're a kind of a "Oh, this'll be the same forever" person... or if you're a photographer and you're always nailing down what's the now... when you realize it doesn't matter how much you try to nail down the now, the now is racing beyond you.

— Elsa Dorfman